“I am not interested in selling my business.” These are words I hear with surprising regularity from business owners. I advise against this frame of thinking and encourage clients to “run it like they’re selling it”.
Selling the business is always happening. You sell it every day to your customers – through product quality, variety and customer service. This is how you make money which is the most important factor in determining the value of a business. Understanding the different business drivers and how they affect the profitability of your company is important, not only if you want to sell your company but also if you want the business to work for you as an investor.
97% of small businesses don’t do this, and they end up losing customers and don’t know why. They lose reputation and wonder what happened. They end up walking away with pittance instead of reasonable return on their investment, not only in dollars but in time invested in building their business. If your business is not saleable, customers will not come back and no prospective buyer will want to entertain the idea of acquiring your business.
Many businesses that do go up for sale are not prepared. A surprising number of businesses sell due to unforeseen circumstances. It wasn’t part of their plan, and the moment is thrust upon them. Getting on top of your business with the idea that you are always selling gets you in the mindset that will help you grow and prosper, and it will put you in a strong negotiating position should you ever become faced with selling. Getting there ahead of time will ensure you get the most of what you deserve for all the time and money invested.
Putting together the right image and system that lets the business sell itself takes time and commitment. This business practice will help you identify and improve the business drivers necessary to allow you to get the most out of your business – whether you sell it or not.